The One-Hundred Years of Lenni & Margot

Dear Reader,

Every so often a books fame outshines the book itself – or at least, in my experience. I think it’s sometimes due to feeling the hype of other readers, only to find that on reading the ‘highly recommended’ book yourself, a sense of disappointment when you discover it’s not a book for you – a lack of personal connection, as it were, as opposed to a failing of the book itself. The One Hundred Years of Lenni & Margot, for me, was definitely not one of those books. On finishing this incredible story I almost felt as if the hype on Twitter and NetGalley didn’t do the book justice.

The One Hundred Years of Lenni & Margot by Marianne Cronin

An extraordinary friendship. A lifetime of stories. Their last one begins here.

Life is short. No-one knows that better than seventeen-year-old Lenni living on the terminal ward. But as she is about to learn, it’s not only what you make of life that matters, but who you share it with.

Dodging doctor’s orders, she joins an art class where she bumps into fellow patient Margot, a rebel-hearted eight-three-year-old from the next ward. Their bond is instant as they realize that together they have lived an astonishing one hundred years.

To celebrate their shared century, they decide to paint their life stories: of growing old and staying young, of giving joy, of receiving kindness, of losing love, of finding the person who is everything.

As their extraordinary friendship deepens, it becomes vividly clear that life is not done with Lenni and Margot yet.

***

The One-Hundred Years of Lenni and Margot was a heart-breaking, funny, wise, profound and deeply memorable story – a book with characters that will stay with me for a very long time; they are so perfect, so flawed, so bruised and so hopeful that they entwine themselves around your heart and don’t let go.

I cried and cried throughout the entirety of the story but the tears were punctuated by laugh out loud moments – what a tender balance to strike. The dialogue was particularly skilful – pacey, sharp, witty, honest, and so full of personality it was as if the characters were speaking for themselves.

I especially loved the cross-generational relationships at the heart of the book. Lenni and Margot are a powerful combination and their journey’s – both separately and together – are incredibly moving. But Father Arthur, New Nurse and Humphrey held equal limelight and were a wonderfully strong supporting cast – and my heart went out to Meena too.

Brimming with love, life, questions…and lots and lots of art 🙂

***

Well that concludes my contribution to the online hype surrounding this book – I sincerely hope I do it justice!

This beautiful story will be published by Random House UK, Transworld Publishers later this week. Thank you to them, NetGalley and the author for giving me an Advanced Reading Copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

Last but not least, thank you to Lucy @ Bookworm Blogger for being my buddy read for this book. I know you adored it as much as me and it was lovely to share Lenni & Margot’s story together… speed reading and smashing our reading check-in targets!

Go check out Lucy’s blog for what she thought of the book 🙂

Meg Readz xx

4 thoughts on “The One-Hundred Years of Lenni & Margot

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